Here we'll cast the spotlight on all things PHR... Products, team members, riders, fabrics and other PHR goodness!
In the spotlight this week is junior Ambassador Sarah O'Connor. Sarah is one of the youngest members on our team and enjoys having a go at all disciplines with her horse Jasper.
This week we cast the spotlight on our Ambassador Kate Ferguson, a showjumper from the NSW Mid North Coast.
Jazmin, our junior Ambassador from the NSW Mid North Coast competes in dressage, hacking & showjumping with her horses Bobby & Monty
Our Ambassador Courtney is an eventer from Sydney, who competes with her off-the-track TB Morton
Our Junior Ambassador Laura from the NSW Mid North Coast competes in showjumping and eventing with her two horses Maggie and George.
When we started to define what we really wanted Petite Horse & Rider to be about, three main goals became obvious right away:
1. Improve availability of riding apparel and tack for 'petite' sized equestrians and ponies;
2. Provide customers with a more personalised fit to their apparel; and
3. Offer apparel that stands out in the crown, enabling riders to show their personality through their riding attire.
The first two goals needed work before we could move onto goal number 3, so we started hashing out the real problems with the fit of the products we planned to offer, and developed a process to solve these problems:
1. IDENTIFY the problem.
2. RESEARCH the problem.
3. DEVELOP solutions to the problem.
4. DESIGN the product using solutions.
5. TEST the product.
So, here's a quick run-down...
Saddlepads that look huge or out of proportion on little ponies. Too much saddle pad for your pony and/or saddle can look out of proportion and pull attention away from your little super-star.
PHR saddle pads have been designed specifically with this problem in mind. Our saddle pads feature cutaway designs in attractive shapes to reduce the amount of pad extending beyond the saddle. PHR saddlepads are made to saddle size, not just "pony" size.
Lack of protective boots in sizes for small ponies. So...you go without, or settle for the best size you can find which is too big, and they slip down, get in the way around the fetlocks, and rub your pony.
The sizes of PHR boots have been designed to suit the shape and proportions of those precious pony legs.
Breeches in petite sizes are few and far between, and usually quite expensive. You know the story: baggy thighs/backside, too long, riding up once you're in the saddle and becoming loose around the waist, then shirts untuck and rub and generally look untidy. Many petite riders turn to child's sizes in frustration, but child's jodhpurs lack the more mature shape and styling of ladies breeches.
Riding shirts just don't fit you properly! The waist doesn't taper to your shape, they are too long and baggy and make you look boyish and shapeless. When you tuck them in they gather into bulky lumps under the waistband of your breeches and rub or just look untidy.
We have conducted hours of research into petite sizing and common fit problems for petite riders. Using the results of our research we have developed our own petite sizes. We are not only attempting to address the sizing issues, but also to create and select styles that suit the shape of the petite rider.
What problems do you have with the fit of riding apparel? Don't hesitate to hit us up, so we can continually improve the fit of PHR apparel for our customers.
So this is posted long after the fact, but it deserves a mention in the PHR story... The samples of our original items arrived on the 19th January 2017, and I was very impatient waiting for the fitting day to arrive!
On a rainy Australia Day a small group of us got together. I was really excited about it, and naturally a bit nervous as well - so much about it was unknown - the sizing, the tailoring, the colour choices, the comfort factor... but thankfully I needn't have worried about the initial reactions.
The fact that it fit near perfectly, looked so amazing and drew such positive initial reactions was even better! Of course there were some tweaks needed here and there (what are samples for, after all), but for the most part the apparel was ready to order.
Now the excitement was at a whole new level!
Where previously I've looked upon my slightly obsessive nature in a bit of a negative light, I'm actually finding it pretty helpful in these early stages of starting a business!
I've been cramming as much as I possibly can into each day, driven by the excitement and passion for my new venture. The idea that PHR products could be filling a real gap in the market (providing unique, custom options and improving availability of petite sizes) is a powerful and thrilling thought.
I've realised that you truely don't know how much there is to starting a business from scratch, until you try to do it! However I've found the process of brand development and product design a lot of fun!
market research ~ business/marketing plans ~ logo & website design ~ sourcing suppliers ~ size development ~ apparel sketches ~ colour & fabric choices ~ ordering samples ~ testing samples ~ setting up social media accounts ~ website building ~ writing product descriptions & other site content... The list truely could go on & on.
During the last 5 months there have been times (I won't lie) when I wondered whether I'd bitten off more than I could chew, adding this huge new venture to my already busy life. But I've loved every overwheming, messy, terrifying moment so far. I will endeavour to keep this blog fairly up to date with PHR shenanigans and developments, but I'm a first time blogger so I'm not promising too much!